Local News

Cause of Rocky Mount Store Fire Remains Unknown

Posted May 4, 2007

— Fire investigators are looking for the cause of a blaze that destroyed a furniture company.

The fire broke out at around 4:30 p.m. Thursday at Jeff's Furniture Warehouse at 220 Marigold St. Firefighters said they had a hard time trying to put the fire out because of the furniture and mattresses that fueled it.

“The building was filed with a lot of furniture and mattresses so we had a very heavy fire load, which created a very rapid fire with a lot of heat,” said Division Chief David English.

Investigators returned to the store Friday morning to monitor potential hot spots. Store manager Harry Hamlet said he had taken the day off Thursday to celebrate his birthday.

"It's devastating. It's devastating. I just don't know what could have caused it. It's an old building," he said.

Fire officials said the building is so unstable that it may be days before they will be able to send in a team to investigate what caused the fire.


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  • fireboy41 May 5, 2007

    When the Rocky Mount Fire Dept. got the call the first truck at the fire said on the radio that they had heavy smoke in the back part of the building. The firefighters were not allowed the enter the building because of the bowstring construction of the roof, which is susceptible to collapse under heated conditions. What they were trying to do was get ladder 30 on the roof and cut a vent hole so they could fight the fire from the air with the ladder truck. By the time the hole was cut the roof had started to collapse. This building was an old building that had most of the original electrical wiring in it. The electrical panels were at the back of the building were the fire may have started. The back area had mostly flammable stuff in it. I am not the fire marshal or a life safety chief here in Rocky Mount but this fire is probably a electrical fire…. If it is Rocky Mount needs to do a good electrical inspection of all the old buildings downtown, for this will be the second large fire

  • Notinitforthemoney May 4, 2007

    Come on people let's give the writers a break. Typos are common we all do them. Plus if the furniture was put in the store in a systymatic way, you could say it was filed in the store.

  • JWELLIS May 4, 2007

    You got the name wrong. It's Henry Hamlet, not Harry Hamlet.

  • anonemoose May 4, 2007

    "Store manager Harry Hamlet said he had taken the day off Thursday to celebrate his birthday". Then add The employess had a celebration in honor if him being gone, and all the candles created a flash over that ignited the flame retardant childrens mattresses and grew from there.

  • 1heelfan May 4, 2007

    Wish these news writers could spell. Filed? I think they probably meant filled? I am not perfect but it seems like everytime I read a newspaper or a website there are misspelled words. I am so sorry that this furniture store burned and I am so sorry that it was FILLED with furniture and mattresses since it was a furniture store! No Kidding!!!

  • Bluedevll May 4, 2007

    "The building was filed with a lot of furniture and mattresses so we had a very heavy fire load"

    At a furniture store? You're kidding!